Marketing Beef for Small-Scale Producers

Editors Note:  This piece was written by Arion Thiboumery of Vermont Packing House and Mike Lorentz of Lorentz Meats in Minnesota.  They note that some of the information is taken from "Beef and Pork Whole Animal Buying Guide." If you are a small‐scale producer, marketing less than 100 beef a year, the way to market your beef for the least amount of time and money is to direct market in halves, quarters, and bundles. If you are a small producer, you probably don’t have a ton of free time to spend making small sales (2 lbs. of ground beef), or a ton of money to sit on inventories of odd cuts until they sell. You need a way to: 1) Move meat in volume – to keep your transaction costs low 2) Sell directly to the people eating it – to keep your prices reasonable 3) Sell all the cuts that come from an animal together – minimal inventory management Here are ten common reasons why people don’t buy meat in halves, quarters, or bundles and what to do about them. Reason 1) I don’t know how much or what I’d get. Response:  Meat from a typical ó beef (from a 1,000 ‐ 1,200 lb. live animal) consists of approximately: 14 T‐bone steaks (3/4” thick)      14 rib steaks (3/4”) 8 sirloin steaks (3/4”)                    8 round steaks (3/4”) 2 sirloin tip roasts (3 lbs.)             6 chuck roasts (4 lbs.) 4 arm roasts (3 lbs.)                        2 rump roasts (3 lbs.) 8 packages of stew beef (1 lb.)

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